A Happy Easter to all those who celebrate. A happy Sunday of baseball to everyone else. On to the game notes!
"Tigers SP Justin Verlander has thrown 177 pitches in 8 2/3 innings over his first two starts, allowing 11 runs -- nine earned -- on 10 hits and six walks." Verlander is picking up where he left off last year. He stinks. On the Tigers staff, the only reliable pitcher since 2008 has been Armando Galarraga. Galarraga's ERA by comparison is only 1.29.
"Curtis Granderson is the only Tigers player to have a hit in all six games this season." Granderson was a point of contention for many fantasy analysts. Some thought his power and average would wane. (I have no idea why.) Regardless, Granderson is proving the detractors wrong with his early season performance.
An interesting development on the Geovany Soto injury. "Cubs Manager Lou Piniella said C Geovany Soto's sore right shoulder is improving. But with the Cubs carrying only one catcher -- Hill, who is playing with a sore toe -- Soto could go to the disabled list if he isn't ready for backup duty by Monday." Tough news for fantasy owners in that Geo might be lost for Week 2. As a Soto owner, I'm looking for a temporary back up.
"Indians DH Travis Hafner got the day off after hitting a homer in his previous two games." It's great to see Hafner get off to a good start. Some have him targeted as the comeback player of the year. So far, he's a great late round addition to your lineup. He's still available in 21% of leagues.
"Coming into the game, Pirates OF Nate McLouth was only 1-for-14 with a homer." McLouth broke out of his early season slump going 2 for 3 with a HR and RBI single. I'm not worried about McLouth. I don't see last season's success at the plate as a abberation.
"Cardinals LF Skip Schumaker, who hit .168 against lefties last season (20-for-119), is 4-for-6 against southpaws thus far." Schumaker was projected to have a good season. His availability at 2B as wel as OF makes him a valuable fantasy commodity.
'Washington RF Elijah Dukes missed the game with a mild right groin strain. He injured throwing home Friday night when Atlanta's Jordan Schafer scored the winning run." Dukes has played well when he's had the playing time. Unfortunately, he hasn't seen the field often and when he did, he was injured. There's no reason to keep Dukes active in Week 2 with his limited play and injury.
"Padres C Henry Blanco has homered twice in a game three times, the last coming on April 10, 2004, at Detroit." With consistent playing time, Blanco is a servicable option at C for most fantasy teams. Blanco still has some pop in his bat and has consistently hit for average. Maybe I'll pick him up as my replacement for Soto...
Filed under the Statistics for Baseball Geeks category: "A's SS Orlando Cabrera was 1-for-2 against Hernandez and is 16-for-32 (.500) lifetime, the best of any hitter with significant at-bats against the right-hander...Nolasco fell to 2-6 with an ERA of 6.36 in 12 games against the Mets."
Injury Update: "Twins C Joe Mauer is scheduled to begin a running program early next week, Gardenhire said. Gardenhire added that Mauer is attempting to speed up his recovery schedule but team doctors are holding him back. "Everything has gone really good. Catching, bullpens and hitting on the field," Gardenhire said. "He feels great. He wants to push the envelope. He wants to go." The team has declined to give a timetable for the two-time All-Star's return... "